Backline Greyhounds - Garrick / Leervis 2009 -(Copyright Craig Bertram Smith-2009)
Oil on Canvas (91cm X 61cm)

Conceptual drawing

To paint two or three Garrick chasing a fly but at the same time seeing the fisherman working his fly through the water - was the request that the owner of this painting emailed me. Even though the thought of conceptualizing and painting this piece inspired and excited me, I knew that this would require great amounts of careful research and reference.

Underwater reference for local sport fish, such as our much respected Garrick, is very difficult to find. And as it stands, which is true for most of my paintings, I had to use bits and pieces of images that I have collected of different aspects to carefully sketch, meticulously draw and finally come up with accurate poses.

The concept drawing is a very important tool that I use, and in some cases coming up with it is the most challenging phase. If the concept drawing works and looks believable then I begin with the final painting (see conceptual drawing). On the other hand if something looks wrong I can make adjustments without affecting the canvas.